Healthy Aging

WATCH: Can Videogames Help Us Cope with the Losses of Aging?


What do we regret at the end of our lives?

Jane McGonigal has an answer. She says the things that most of us regret are having worked too hard, having lost touch with friends, not having spent enough time playing, not having expressed our true selves and not following our dreams.

What we don’t regret:  time wasted playing video games.

In fact, McGonigal says gaming can help us live better – and in this remarkable TED Talk, she explains how and why.


Can Videogames Help Us Heal?


McGonigal is a game designer. Some time ago, complications from a concussion derailed her life; unable to do any of the things that make her happy made her want to die. Instead, she created a game called SuperBetter.

Soon, McGonigal started hearing from people around the world who were playing SuperBetter to help themselves face challenges like cancer and chronic pain.

“People were playing it for terminal diagnoses. … And I could tell from their messages and their videos that the game was helping them in the same ways that it helped me.”

They all were tapping into our capacity to heal – and grow – through “post-traumatic growth,” McGonigal says.

We wondered: As we age and face loss, are the more resilient among us tapping into post-traumatic growth? Could certain videogames help us do that better?

To learn more about McGonigal’s journey, the science behind the videogame-healing connection, and the phenomenon known as post-traumatic growth, watch the video. You’ll be surprised.

Then share your thoughts in the comments below.


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